By Patrick Hunt, Trail Coordinator
As Lehigh Valley Greenways Greenways (LVG) prepares to award 2020 mini grants, we’re looking back on past projects. In previous grant cycles, mini-grants were awarded to two projects that improve the D&L Trail user experience. More specifically, these projects include the Slatington Trailhead Visitor’s Center and a bike work stand at the Sand Island Trailhead. Both these projects show the dedication of local communities to meeting the needs of D&L Trail users.
LVG 22.08 Northern Lehigh Recreation Authority – Slatington Trailhead Visitor’s Center
In 2018/2019, Lehigh Valley Greenways provided $2,721 of DCNR funding, with matching funds from Northern Lehigh Recreation Authority, for the Slatington Trailhead Visitor’s Center. LVG awarded dollars towards staffing and maintaining the new center. The visitor’s center improves the trailhead, while promoting further economic development, and supporting community programs. To that effect, the visitor’s center was part of Slatington’s larger effort to become the D&L’s first Trail Town.
As a result, the Slatington Trailhead Visitors Center was open on weekends from 9am-2pm May – October 2019. This was made possible in partnership with the Venture Group– an all-volunteer association of volunteer organizations, municipal governments, and caring individuals.
In 2019, LVG provided a $1,900 mini-grant, matched by Wildlands Conservancy, for a bike work stand and educational signage at the Sand Island Trailhead. Prioritizing accessibility and inclusivity, the bike work stand installed is ADA compliant and open for public use.
Approximately 1500 people/year participate in Wildlands Conservancy’s Bike & Boat Adventures, based at Sand Island. Additionally, 280,000 people use the D&L Trail, some of which pass through Sand Island. These Trail users now have an ADA-compliant Deluxe Public Bike Work Stand. The stand includes a bike pump with gauge, wheel chock, and other bike tools.
In addition to the repair station, education signage was installed to provide an opportunity for visitors to learn about the Lehigh River Watershed and the adjacent Lehigh River Water Trail. Wildlands anticipates an average of 5 people per day may use the bike repair station during the height of the 2020 season.
The Delaware & Lehigh National Heritage Corridor is proud to spearhead local Lehigh Valley Greenway efforts. However, we recognize these projects could not be made possible with the various LVG partners and funding from DCNR. More information about these Mini-Grants as well as other can be found on the Lehigh Valley Greenways Website.